Variety's Scores

For 10,101 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 52% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 King of the Hill
Lowest review score: 0 Dirty Grandpa
Score distribution:
10101 movie reviews
  1. Lee takes a conventional, talking-heads-and-archival-clips approach to the material, but rewardingly establishes an intimate connection with his subjects by devoting considerable time to the personalities and families of the four victims.
  2. The tangled tale of love and disguise is awesome in its action sequences but doesn't touch the heart to the same degree.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Balkan probably gives her best performance to date to create a woman tormented by instability, sexual drive and psycho demons -- disjointedly portrayed in the script.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Barbra Streisand in her Hollywood debut makes a marked impact.
  3. One of the most wildly entertaining docs of recent years.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Perhaps the best film made during the 30-year partnership of Ismail Merchant and James Ivory.
  4. While Lowery’s actual method of delivery may not be scary, it’s sure to haunt those who open themselves up to the experience.
  5. Its modest surface belies the depths of a lovely seriocomedy that concisely lays bare all kinds of uncomfortable dynamics in seemingly casual, low-key fashion.
  6. The love child of Bollywood and Hollywood, Gangs of Wasseypur is a brilliant collage of genres, by turns pulverizing and poetic in its depiction of violence.
  7. Knowingly incendiary but remarkably cool-headed, and built around yet another of Isabelle Huppert’s staggering psychological dissections, Paul Verhoeven’s long-awaited return to notional genre filmmaking pulls off a breathtaking bait-and-switch: Audiences arriving for a lurid slab of arthouse exploitation will be taken off-guard by the complex, compassionate, often corrosively funny examination of unconventional desires that awaits them.
  8. The Tale of Princess Kaguya is a visionary tour de force, morphing from a childlike gambol into a sophisticated allegory on the folly of materialism and the evanescence of beauty.
  9. In another director’s hands, the residents might be labeled “eccentric” and condescendingly depicted for laughs, but Ewan McNicol and Anna Sandilands approach this touch-and-go community with curiosity and humanism, capturing what feels like a deciding moment in a series of struggles so far off the grid, they would otherwise escape our notice entirely.
  10. The result is as grim and unyielding a depiction of the Holocaust as has yet been made on that cinematically overworked subject — a masterful exercise in narrative deprivation and sensory overload that recasts familiar horrors in daringly existential terms.
  11. The Dardennes once again find a richness of human experience that dwarfs most movies made on an epic canvas.
  12. The effect of National Gallery is to reinforce the notion that paintings are objects to know and understand.
  13. With an accountant's eye for precision and a political scientist's grasp of the machinations that move national policy, Charles Ferguson's No End in Sight itemizes the errors, misjudgments and follies that have defined the Bush Administration's invasion of Iraq.
  14. Because Petzold is such a gifted storyteller, with the lean, driving narrative sense of the film noir masters, he also keeps those twists and turns chugging smoothly along, building to a climax so expertly orchestrated that one imagines he started with it in mind and worked the rest of the movie backward from there.
  15. As long as Kaurismäki presents this tidy a vision (aesthetically and morally), he’ll continue to be an engagingly hermetic art-house curio impersonating an artist.
  16. Utterly engrossing dual-character study, unfolding with a serene disregard for indie quirkiness, Goodbye Solo radiates authenticity.
  17. A low-key but sharply observed work that benefits from real local flavor and a gift for lyric image making.
  18. DuVernay’s razor-sharp portrait of the Civil Rights movement — and Dr. King himself — at a critical crossroads is as politically astute as it is psychologically acute, giving us a human-scale King whose indomitable public face belies currents of weariness and self-doubt.
  19. The Winding Stream is cogent and compelling as a pop-culture history lesson, and genuinely uplifting while it shows how contemporary artists — along with descendants like Rosanne and John Carter Cash — keep the legacy of A.P., Mother Maybelle, June and Johnny alive and thriving.
  20. A love letter to silent cinema sealed with a smirk, The Artist reteams director Michel Hazanavicius with dapper "OSS 117" star Jean Dujardin for another high-concept homage, delivering a heartfelt, old-school romance without the aid of spoken dialogue or sound.
  21. The Piano confirms Campion as a major talent, an uncompromising filmmaker with a very personal and specific vision.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Simultaneously fascinating and repellent, Goodfellas is Martin Scorsese's colorful but dramatically unsatisfying inside look at Mafia life in 1955-1980 New York City.
  22. If films about coping with memory loss and/or reverse-order storytelling now constitute a mini-genre, then Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is arguably the best of the lot.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    In every respect it is outstanding.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Cooper does an unusually able job of portraying the marshal. (Review of Original Release)
  23. Taken together, "Flags" and "Letters" represent a genuinely imposing achievement, one that looks at war unflinchingly -- that does not deny its necessity but above all laments the human loss it entails.

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